Moto X4 Smartphone info Revealed

Article from Digital Trends (Click this link)
I have some questions about this.

1.  The phone looks like a flat hotdog bun. I miss the days of the Moto X 2014 where that bad boy was looking like it was ready to work the boardroom with some mobile class.

2.  I’m sad that the Moto Z is the flagship side of the line.  The Moto X did really well as the flagship. Modular is nice and all, this is a ploy to take hard earned money on some real expensive extras.

3.  Below is a leak from Android Authority showing the look of the device.  I wonder when we will see a Bezel-less Moto phone?  People haven’t barked about the bezels on this, so maybe we won’t see it for a while.

4. It’s always good to see a phone like the Moto X return. However I don’t know if this is the return that I want to see.   This is a mid-range phone that could have just been the G5 and call it a day.  Or the G5S. Now my head hurts. 

5.  There’s a Moto C too?  So now we have the Z2, X4, G5, G5S, some E ones, and a C?  Too many things.

The Moto X4 interesting to you?  Tell me why in the comments.

Info on the RED Hydrogen Phone, the random expensive device that screams WHY.

No, really, I really want to know what the point of this device really is.

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RED, the camera company known for high end camera products that have extravagant prices, has surprised us all with a new Android phone called the RED Hydrogen (or Hydrogen One). The pre-orders began yesterday.  RED is a company that is known for camera products such as the RED Weapon X, the Camera that costs more than most peoples yearly salary, and other insane 4K and 3D cameras in Hollywood.  The prices of RED camera typically cost 50,000 dollars and higher.  With those prices, we can only imagine that the RED Hydrogen One will have a wildly extravagant price.

So knowing this, its safe to say that the RED Hydrogen will have an equally as ridiculous price tag.  Details are pretty light on the device, however The RED Hydrogen is being touted as ‘The Worlds first Holographic Media Machine”.  The 5.7″ display uses nanotechnology to move “between traditional 2D content, holographic multi-view content, 3D content, and interactive games”.  The press release was extravagant at best.

The press release is relatively aggressive, and the phone is known as the RED Hydrogen One in the press release.  Save for the name and a bunch of unfounded claims regarding the display and other features, not much is known about the device.  From what we do know, the phone will be unlocked, with no carrier bloatware.   Additional accessories will be available at launch for an additional price.  Knowing the price of the actual device, and the company as a whole,  the accessories will be relatively insane.

As stated by the press release, the RED Hydrogen will be modular as well. In the press release, the company promised that the RED Hydrogen One will be compatible with its camera products and an “ever expanding modular component system”.  The device will have a headphone jack, microSD expansion for storage, multi-dimensional audio tech, and the phone will have USB-C plug for charging.

The RED Hydrogen is currently taking pre-orders for the Hydrogen, and it will ship in early 2018.  The RED Hydrogen One will come in two variants, the ‘Titanium’ version will cost $1595, and the ‘Aluminum’ version will cost $1195.

Ironically, did anyone catch the pre-order information that states that “Current pricing is available for a limited time only”?  That can only mean these rather expensive phones may be even more expensive.  I’m just not sure what the actual point of an extremely expensive device really is.  Also, why would they launch pre-orders and not give any actual specifications of the device?  I’m highly intrigued about the device.

Tech Homie Rumor Central: Pixel 2 edition

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Today’s blog is focused on the rumors surrounding the upcoming Pixel 2.

Phone rumors are always fun to check out. Especially if you are in the market for a new phone and you don’t have a clue what to get.  However, the biggest question that crosses our minds when it comes to rumors is whether to believe them, or to take them with a grain of salt.

When it comes to the rumors about the Pixel 2, it’s hard to say.   Here’s what we have found so far rumor-wise.  The first set of Rumors you see below come from 9to5Google.com:

  • LG will be (possibly) building the Pixel XL successor. If this is true, we could be looking at something modeled after the G6.  What does that mean for people like you and I? Easier time taking in media (YouTube, Hulu, Netflix, playing games, etc) because of the new screen ratio that was introduced with the G6.
  • The XL version will have a nearly 6 inch 1440p OLED panel from LG.
  • The headphone jack may be leaving us. Now on the one hand, you can say goodbye to the tons of wired headphones (I’ve got about 4 myself) that you probably have. On the other hand, more people are getting Bluetooth headphones (I have a pair), and with the popularity of Bluetooth speakers, maybe it’s not so bad after all.  Up to you guys to decide on this one.
  • The codenames for the the Pixel are ‘walleye’ and ‘taimen’. Fish. Tasty. Maybe. Walleye will be made by HTC, and the Taimen model will either be made by LG, or by HTC.  as stated before there may be third model, which may be the LG model.
  • Walleye, will basically have the the same design as last years model.  Bezels will be larger, surrounding the 4.97 inch 1920 x 1080 display.  Not necessarily that bad, but with the Galaxy S8 and the LG G6, folks who are longing for less bezels wont find it here.
  • The specs will be updated to match this years flagships specs.  Snapdragon 835 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB storage options.  Last year, the Pixel had a 32GB option and a 128GB option.
  • The Pixel models will stick to a single lens, staying away from dual camera crazy and deciding to be a little different.  Most folks don’t always have a need for dual cameras, so this may be a welcome change for a flagship phone.
  • Expect to see a slight change to the two tone back of the phones, as well.
  • From Japanese Blog Soku (found by way of BGR) traces of the Pixel 2 devices were found in the code of the squeezable HTC U11.  So will the both devices be made by HTC?  Or will LG have an option as well?

As the rumors come fast and furious for the Pixel 2 devices,  this blog will be updated.  The Pixel still stands as one of the more important devices to launch from Google.  Hopefully the devices will continue the trend.

 

How to make Podcast listening less confusing. Keep it simple kids!

Saturday is a great day to relax, and take in some information that you may not normally take during the week.  Listening to podcasts are great ways to get news information without dealing with tons of TV commercials, and without the general annoyance of trying to tune into your favorite radio station.  Most radio stations these days even have a podcast channel to make listening to content even easier for you to do.  However, finding ways to listen to podcasts can be tricky.  I’m here to let you know that it shouldn’t be.  I’m here to let you know that it should be easy!

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The Tech Homie Plays; Nonstop Chuck Norris

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Bored on a Saturday? Happens to the best of us.  From time to time I get sucked into the wide world of iOS and Android Games. . . Usually to the demise of any sort of productivity that I had planned for prior to my game play.  Today’s productivity fail leads me to the wide world of Chuck Norris beating up thugs possessed by a cat robot.

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Tech Homie Reviews: LG G6

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LG has had some interesting iterations of its flagship G series of phones.  From the 1st version, the LG Optimus G, to the G6 that we have today,  LG has had a long journey of missteps, triumphs, and innovations with their flagship series.    The LG G6 launched earlier this month to fanfare and anticipation, especially after 2016’s hiccup that was the LG G5.

The specifications of the G6 are flagship category, which is a step up from the previously launched HTC U Ultra.  The G6 Specs:

  • Dual 13MP Rear Camera
  • 5MP Front Camera
  • 4GB RAM
  • 32GB Storage/Expandable to 256GB with MicroSD
  • 3300 mAh Battery
  • 5.7″ Screen (light on the bezel,  and an almost 80% screen to body ratio)
  • Android Nougat 7.1

Hardware

The LG G6 throws away the modular approach that they attempted in 2016 with the G5. Instead, LG has decided on a more sleek, unibody design that feels premium in the hand.  The edges of the devices add to the premium feel due to the chamfered edge that goes around the entire device.  I currently have the “Astro Black” version of the LG G6.

The color looks almost identical to the Jet Black iPhone version.  The color makes the phone feel sleek, and good in the hand, but it also makes the phone a finger print and scratch magnet. (As we speak there’s a pretty prominent scratch on the back side of the device due to me setting the device down on a surface, of some sort.) 

Now I have a severe issue with the scratches on this device. I have had this device for less than two weeks, and I have had an insane amount of scratches on this device.  Normal usage should not give this many scratches to the point where it could be an issue with the camera. 

LG, these scratches could have been avoided.  We already went down this road with the iPhone 7 Plus. You should been more careful.

The 5.7″ screen is certainly large, but does not feel large due to the very thin bezels on all sides of the device.  The screen to body ratio is amazing in general, yet when you compare the device phones like the iPhone 7 Plus, the G6 absolutely shines.  The device has an 18:9 screen, which is certainly helpful when playing games and watching videos. 

For some games and videos that aren’t made for the different screen to body ratio, LG gives you the ability to sort of stretch the screen so you can take advantage of the full 5.7 inches that is available on the G6.   The colors look accurate on the device (which has not always been the case with LG phones).  The screen does fairly well in the sunlight.

The G6 only has two buttons on the left side of the device, the Volume Up and Volume Down buttons.  On the top of the G6 you have the headphone jack, which will always be a necessity in my opinion, and not a luxury.  On the bottom of the device you have the USB Type C port, and the speaker, which is in an unfortunate place depending on whether you are right or left handed.

Fingerprint Scanner/Power Button Placement

Like other G series phones, the power button rests on the the back of the phone, below the dual cameras.  LG pioneered the idea of power buttons on the back of the phone.  If you’ve never had a device with the power button on the back of the device, it does take a little getting used to at first.

The placement ends up being fairly natural, since your finger rests in that location when you hold the phone.  The power button also doubles as the fingerprint scanner.   The fingerprint scanner for the G6 is on the back of the device directly under the dual cameras.  The placement of the fingerprint scanner feels natural,  since your finger tends to rest directly under the phone.  Compared to phones that have their fingerprint sensors on the front of the device, (iPhone, Galaxy s7/7 edge, etc)  the fingerprint sensor feels just right to me.

The fingerprint scanner is fast, which is a nice addition to a phone brand that can sometimes be bogged down by extra software.  With the G6, you have the ability to not only unlock your device, but to unlock certain content from apps like quick memo (LG’s notes app) and the gallery.    The LG G6 does not disappoint with the fingerprint now, but we will see what happens when the phone begins to show age.

Camera

The LG G6 has dual 13 MP Cameras on the back of the device. One camera is used for normal range shots, say if you need to take a picture of a particular item in front of you.  The other camera is used for wide angles.  as you zoom out from regular angle to wide angle the transition between the two cameras is almost seamless.  Regular daylight shots are nice.  The wide angle shots are quite helpful when you need to take a shot of your entire family, or all of your friends, or any other large group of people in one place at the same time.

The 5MP selfie camera could definitely have been improved upon, but if you aren’t one to take many shots of yourself, then I would not worry.  The quality of the front facing camera should be just fine for the majority of the folks who buy this device.  The main camera does well enough that I can look past the flaws of the front camera.

Software:

LG’s UI has always been a thorn in my side, due to the fact that its about the busiest software that exists in the android world.  The software on the LG G6 has improved slightly.  The Verizon version of the device has its fair share of Verizon bloatware, which luckily can be disabled to help save a bit of space.  Software on a device could become much smoother if carriers let some of their carrier apps become optional to download.  Perhaps for the LG G7 carriers could maybe lay off having so many carrier applications on the phone? Who knows.

Aside from the bloatware issue the G6 does run pretty smooth right now.  Games run pretty well on the device, yet it does run hot on occasion, which isn’t the best when you have to stop your perfect Geometry Dash session because your hands feel like they are on fire.  The phone itself won’t catch on fire, but after a few minutes of holding a relatively hot phone will surely make you wonder.

Battery:

The LG G6 comes with a 3300 mAh battery.  While a 3500+ mAh would be preferred on a device that is 5.7 inches,  the G6 can pretty easily get through a day of moderate to heavy usage without needing a charge.  I normally take the G6 off charge around 6AM, and can easily get through the end of the work day around 47% battery power.  Most folks do not go about their days with multiple chargers in close proximity, so its good to have a phone that can last as long as the G6 does without having to worry about plugging the phone into a charger.

Conclusion:

The LG G6 is a huge improvement over the disappointment that was the LG G5.  LG took the flaws of last years device to heart when they began to design the G6.  The device is sleek, premium, and even a little flashy where it needs to be.  Hopefully as time goes on, the LG G6 can hold its own against the likes of Samsung, HTC, and Apple, each of which will have devices launching this year.

What do you think about the G6?  Is it a device that you would want to use?  Or are you waiting to see what other phones are coming to market this year?  Let me know!

Tech Homie Quick tips; How to Take a Screenshot with your Android Device

Screenshot_20170408-185117.pngWe previously showed you how to take a screenshot with an iPhone.  Of course the iPhone is not the only smartphone in existence.  Many of you have Android phones as well.  No matter what Android phone you have (Samsung, LG, HTC, Huawei, ZTE, the list goes on) some aspects of the device will remain relatively the same.  Taking a screenshot with Android is simple.

Once you find the screen that you need to capture, all you need to do is press and hold the Power button and the Volume Down button at the same time.   Doesnt matter whether it’s an Android Phone or Tablet,  all you need to do is press and hold the Power Button and Volume down button.  The result?  A screenshot.  Taking screenshots can be very helpful if you need to show someone how to get to a particular screen on their device.  Taking a screenshot can also be very helpful if you ever need visual evidence, to show something that may be wrong with your device.

Did you succeed in trying to take a screenshot?  If you had any trouble feel free to shoot a message over to Tech Homie HQ and we can help you out.  f you ever need help with learning how to use your devices, feel free to reach out to the Tech Homie at thetechhomie@gmail.com.   We’re here for your questions, your assistance, and your support!

Tech Homie Quick Tip: Finding your Smartphone OS Version

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Here’s a quick tip for when the resident wireless phone technician tries to confuse you while trying to troubleshoot your phone.  Odds are one of the first things you will be asked is what version of iOS or Android happens to be currently running on your device

ANDROID:

So first it is good to know that your mileage may vary here, due to the sheer amount of different OEMs that happen to manufacture Android Devices.  Screenshot_2017-03-31-19-22-25

From LG, to Huawei, to Samsung, each Android OEM will put their own spin on Android to set them apart from the rest.

Navigating around the settings of the device won’t necessarily change as much, since the device still runs on Android.

In order to reach the Android Version Number, you want to go to the settings icon (which looks like a small gear), look for about device, then look for “Software Information”.  You will be able to find the Android version, security patch level, and Build number of the device in the section.

iOS:

This is pretty streamline no matter which version iPhone, iPad or iPod TFile_000ouch you may have.    Each version has gradually changed aesthetically, adding and removing features along the way, but the same underlying operating system exists under the hood.

Some people find this to be a benefit to the iOS ecosystem due to the strong similarities as new devices continue to launch.  Either way, sometimes it can still be tricky to figure out which version currently resides on your i-Device.

To get to the version on iOS you want to go to the Settings icon, then from settings you want to navigate down to general, then press About.  You will be able to notice what version you are running about halfway down the screen from there.  Take a look at the about screen for the iPhone 6 below:

Hopefully this little quick tip will save you a small amount of headache when answering your typical troubleshooting questions over the phone, or at your local electronics store in the future!

Take it easy folks!